by Chelsea Weibust
I think we’ve all had to deal with late paying clients. Whether the problem is waiting around for snail mail or waiting for your client to finally cut the check, it can be really frustrating, especially when you have bills to pay.
When working with local clients still I prefer to use the snail-mail-cut-the-check method. I don’t mind using the post or even swinging by and personally picking up the check myself because I don’t have to pay any fees that way. Yes, sometimes it takes longer but it’s so nice to get the full amount of the money I earned.
When working online though, my clients are from all across the country and I wouldn’t feel very comfortable having my precious, hard earned cash be transported from one mail truck to another, to eventually get here many days later. That totally stresses me out! That’s why for those particular clients I always use ACH payments.
What are ACH payments?
ACH stands for Automated Clearing House which is a system for moving money through banks electronically so you can avoid using things like checks, wire transfers, cash, etc. The benefit of ACH, in contrast to wire transfers, is that bank fees are usually only about $3 for ACH whereas fees can be $30 or more for wire transfers.
If you’re still on the fence, here are four reasons to use ACH payments:
ACH payments cost less than other electronic payment methods
You’ll get peace of mind knowing your check won't get lost in the mail
You can get paid much faster
If you use ACH payments Freshbooks, your invoices will automatically be marked as paid once you receive payment
If you’re looking to try new accounting software, you might want to try using Freshbooks.
[Full disclosure: I am an affiliate for Freshbooks. I recommend their product to you because I get incredible value from their services, not because of the commission I receive if you choose to subscribe to their services through my links.]
Whether or not you’re already a Freshbooks user, you’ll be happy to know that Freshbooks offers the option to accept ACH payments from your clients! The best part is, it’s ridiculously easy to set up. All you have to do is, when setting up your invoices, change the “Accept Credit Cards” payment option to “YES” and you can even set up recurring billing to clients too.
You can use Freshbooks to:
Log project hours
Track expenses - learn more about tracking your expenses here
Create recurring invoices and accept ACH payments to get paid faster
Create estimates and proposals
Create accounting reports that you can share with your accountant
However you choose bill your clients, accepting ACH payments is definitely an option worth considering!
If you haven’t streamlined your time tracking and billing processes yet, then I have some life-changing info for you. Again, I’m an affiliate for Freshbooks. I absolutely love them and their software for making the business side of my business so painless and I want to help you feel that feeling too.
Aside from all of the built-in features offered for time tracking, estimate/proposal templates, charts, reports, and all the other great features I already mentioned above, there are tons of useful tools specifically for invoicing.
Before you send your invoice off to your clients, Freshbooks has a bunch of useful tools to help you get paid faster.
With Freshbooks you can:
Accept online payments
Make recurring invoices
Send late payment reminders
Charge late fees for late paying clients
Change the currency
Change the language
Also, if you send your invoice through Freshbooks (as opposed to downloading and emailing or printing and sending snail mail style) you’re able to see when your client has viewed your invoice.
Basically, Freshbooks is amazing. If you’d like to give it a shot, you can try it for free for 30 days here.